This week, with the death of Hillary Clinton's mother, we got some insight into the major female influence in the life of one of the most accomplished women of our time. The New York Times obituary and an article in New York reveal Dorothy Rodham, a woman who lived to see her daughter run for President and become Secretary of State before she passed away Tuesday at the age of 92, as a loving mother who managed to give her daughter the upbringing she missed. In her book, Living History, Secretary Clinton contrasted her upbringing with her mother's difficult childhood, writing: "I'm still amazed at how my mother emerged from her lonely early life as such an affectionate and levelheaded woman."
According to The New York Times, Clinton "credited her mother with giving her a love of the higher learning that Mrs. Rodham never had, a curiosity about a larger world that Mrs. Rodham had not seen, and a will to persevere — about which Mrs. Rodham knew a great deal."
In a particularly touching moment in the Times obituary, Secretary Clinton recalled how her mother taught her to stand up for herself: At age 4, she returned home in tears after a neighborhood bully taunted her. "You have to face things and show them you're not afraid," her mother told her. If she was hit again, Mrs. Rodham advised, "hit her back."
"She later told me she watched from behind the curtain as I squared my shoulders and marched across the street," Mrs. Clinton wrote. "I returned a few minutes later, glowing with victory."
All of which is a reminder of how we are all shaped by the women who raised us. With that in mind, We thought we'd take a look at other women who have led successful careers who credit their mothers (and, in some cases, grandmothers) with instilling in them the tools to succeed in the world:
PHOTOS: Famous Women and The Mothers Who Raised Them